Dark Energy

As explained in the CERN article we humans have, to date, been able to detect the physical presence of only some 5% of the matter in the universe. The presence of the other 95% is deduced mathematically from the gravitational effects necessary to keep everything from tearing itself apart. Up until now this so-called Dark Matter has been invisible to us.

But wait - there's more. Gravitational balancing would require something like six times the amount of visible matter. Dark Matter, then, is thought to comprise another 27% of the universe. The other 68% has been labelled Dark Energy - a mysterious substance pervading the universe evenly in both space and time. And that's all we need to know about that.

In a recent discovery first presented to the Waikato-Bays regional conference, research has determined that there is a parallel to this state of affairs in the Bridge World.

Analysis focussed on answering the question "What is the WBRC doing to promote growth in the region's clubs?" came to the alarming conclusion: NOT MUCH!!.

Although we're very proud about what we do do, when we looked at the figures of just who it affects, the answer came back as being only 5-10% of all affiliated members. Even more disturbing is the corollary that most of our resources are being spent on activities which have demonstrably little attraction for the vast majority of club members.

We can therefore deduce the presence of a preponderance of Dark Energy in the world of bridge - aka those who simply want a game of cards once or twice a week. They have no interest in attending tournaments, find the masterpoints scheme incomprehensible, are uncomfortable with unusual bidding systems, rarely attend any lessons offered, and might make 20 C points in a good month. You are invited to trawl through your membership list and find how many members of your club fit these criteria. But be warned - it's much easier to identify the flip side of that coin.

These faithful souls are, however, the very heart and soul of our game. They turn up each week, pay their dues, enjoy themselves .. and that's all they WANT to do. It is they who support not only their club but also its tone. Given the leadership they will generally be quite happy to follow along .. and if that leadership is vibrant and supportive then their club will appear so to visitors and newcomers. Further thought is now being directed into how the WBRC can help develop and maintain healthy cultures in our clubs as a primary means of promoting the growth of our numbers.